The United States Department of Health and Human Services is working on a pilot program that would give ambulance operators the option—aided by incentives—to take patients with nonemergent complaints to lower-cost setting like urgent care instead of the emergency room.
Patients with recurrent symptoms should have an expanded history—including a genitourinary history in premenarchal girls.
Urgent care has benefited from (or perhaps driven) the trend of patients wanting to see a qualified provider the same day they need to, without an appointment. Going hand-in-hand with that is the need to find such a provider. Enter social media. When people post a review on Yelp! or gift an urgent care center with a “like” on its Facebook page, people notice—and may be more inclined to visit that location.
JUCM (both the journal and in this newsletter) is full of information and news about current trends in urgent care acquisitions and mergers. The Urgent Care Association’s newsletter is, too, and if you attended the recent UCA convention you heard plenty about how health systems are buying up small, and even not-so-small, urgent care operations. Some perceive that big health systems are gobbling up urgent care centers as an investment or in the spirit of, If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.
The Department of Veteran Affairs has loosened its regulations about where veterans can seek care considerably in the past couple of years. In certain conditions, such as distance from or availability of care at a VA facility, they can head straight to a walk-in clinic without preauthorization. The Urgent Care Association took notice—close notice, in fact, and is urging the VA to tweak the policy.
Urgent care’s roots are in entrepreneurial physicians who felt there was a better way to practice medicine, and blazed a new path that led to the industry we see today.
The idea of a “typical” urgent care operation buyer is evolving along with the industry. While private equity has been an essential player in market growth, healthcare organizations with longer-term vision are now more commonly involved in acquisitions.
Konica Minolta Healthcare Releases Software Upgrade for SONIMAGE® HS1 Ultrasound System Featuring Improvements in Clinical Workflow and MSK Functionality
Konica Minolta Healthcare Americas, Inc., a developer of high-end, point-of-care ultrasound solutions, announces the release of a new software upgrade for the SONIMAGE® HS1 Ultrasound System that delivers workflow improvements, new imaging capabilities and artificial intelligence-assisted functionality that enables hands-free operation during interventional procedures. Designed with the MSK practitioner in mind, the HS1 System features advanced functionality to support confident diagnoses and treatment management at the point-of-care.
We’ve been tracking the confluence of healthcare delivery and private industry, especially among tech companies, for some time now. The latest could be a move that ultimately puts Amazon in direct competition with urgent care centers for some patients.
If you’ve worked in more than one setting—say, a traditional primary care office and an urgent care center—you’ve probably noticed differing patient preferences. It’s self-evident, for example, that patient who go to urgent care centers prioritize being able to see a provider today over waiting a few days to see their “regular” doctor.